Today, Mozilla announced that it will soon begin selling ads within Firefox, its internet browser. This announcement serves as a followup on an earlier announcement made by the company last year when it said that its browser would begin blocking third-party advertising software automatically by default, something that sent the online advertising industry ablaze with chatter on the topic.
Mozilla says that the ads will appear within Firefox's "New Tabs Page," and will feature both locally targeted as well as mass market ads via a new initiative called "Directory Tiles." Mozilla unveiled a beta version of the Directory Tile system last year for users who opted in to receiving tailored content delivered to them based on their browsing history, and the company says that from its testing, it now sees more than 100 billion "tile impressions" annually. This opens up a big advertising niche that Mozilla hopes to capitalize on.
"Some of these tile placements will be from the Mozilla ecosystem, some will be popular websites in a given geographic location, and some will be sponsored content from hand-picked partners to help support Mozilla's pursuit of our mission," Mozilla said in a blog post. "The sponsored tiles will be clearly labeled as such, while still leading to content we think users will enjoy." A spokes person for Mozilla followed up by saying: "We are looking to partner with like-minded content owners and creators, such as leading publishers and curators as well as innovative advertising agencies."